Resigning my contract Military

I understand that Pope Benedict and previously John Paul II did not see Iraq as a just invasion. My priest said one could argue that fighting the war now is a different story morally wise for a Catholic. What about Afghanistan?

The real issue Im getting at is, is it morally permissible for me as a soldier to resign my contract with the state of war our country is in? Or am I obliged in any way to get out after my contract ends? I want official teaching if there is any. Thank you :slight_smile:

The Church does not hold that it is immoral to enlist or re-enlist in the US military. There is no general obligation to avoid military service. Furthermore, it could be argued that there are morally problematic aspects to many places we could take in the US economy. It is not as if the United States, government and civilian, has no moral questions to wrestle with, save those concerning its military efforts. You have to get work somewhere.

You are in the best position to discern whether the United States government is likely to use your particular contributions in a way that is moral or immoral, bad, good, better, or best, or if God may have another more fruitful call for you elsewhere. I think your choice is not necessarily between good and evil, but more between several ways that you might serve God, some better-suited to God’s plan for you than others. Pray about that before you decide.

Well I am applying for admission to get a bachelors in theology at University of Saint Thomas in MN. They offer an ROTC program, which in fact would require me to resign. I feel compelled to do it, it is job security that is for sure and it might have to do with that ol sense of honor in me. I will pray about it I suppose :slight_smile:

I would be deployment proof until I am done with 2 years of it. What America might be doing by then, who knows though? Iraq and Afghanistan, if not fully done, will be very close to being done. We are already pulling out.

Those who are sworn to serve their country in the armed forces are servants of the security and freedom of nations. If they carry out their duty honorably, they truly contribute to the common good of the nation and the maintenance of peace.~CCC 2310

From what I can understand if you are sworn in, you are doing good so there is nothing morally you need to be worried about. I don’t know if as a Catholic you can argue the just war doctrine as a reason to get out before the end of your contract.

You can ask for a release from your obligation based on your religious beliefs. Be prepared to discover that if you are allowed to be in the military at all by your religious beliefs, then you will NOT be released.

YOU chose to make the obligation. YOU chose to accept the benefits of that contract. YOU chose to be in the ROTC ,which pays most, if not all, of your college costs. Now, after gaining the benefit, you wish to be released from the contract because you “changed your mind”?

If you are released, you WILL have to pay the government back for all of the expenses that they paid for. AND, you can not discharge that debt in Bankruptcy.

To me, is is a huge moral failing to take advantage of a program like ROTC, and to then attempt to NOT have to fulfill the obligation that you freely chose to subject yourself to.

I’m a little confused. You’re in the military now and are planning on going to college that has an ROTC program? Or you are currently in the ROTC program and want to resign after you obtain your bachelors?

According to the Church, it is completely morally permissible for you to enlist and deploy. There is no need to resign.

I am still in the Marines and I’ve done 3 tours in the middle east.

Afghanistan is becoming morally problematic. The Afghan police (which we fund and train) is corrupt, and part of their pay in some provinces is given in “Bacha Bazi” (Dancing boys). look it up. A friend of mine in a very senior position (joint billet) just came back and told me about this. This is a fact. So I am coming to the conclusion that we are materially cooperating with evil. And I am thinking about retiring for this reason.

No no no I think people are misunderstanding here :o) I am in, I am not looking to get out early. I am wondering if it is morally permissible to REsign when the time comes. Or if when the time comes, choose to opt out and retire out. After your contract you have a choice to extend, or not. As part of ROTC I would have to extend I believe. I am considering doing the program, but want to make sure it is ok to extend my contract or not.

The Church did not declare Iraq or Afghanistan to be unjust wars. Even the personal opinion of the Pope does not change that.
In the case of Afghanistan it was authorised by the UN and that makes it officially a just war and armed forces participating in it are NOT committing any sin (apart from any individuals who might rape and murder of course but that has nothing to do with the war as such people are criminals).

I am not sure where you are. Have you been commissioned. How much time is left on your obligation. Are you in ROTC only, etc. Are you prior enlisted but now on ROTC.

What’s your actual status?

Sure, resign when you have fully met your obligations. Nothing impermissible about that. Resigning midway through your obligation would be problematic.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit